Overcoming Grief

My baby died, seven or so weeks after his conception, I can’t quite remember how many weeks exactly. I know I could dig up the exact number if I looked through my old emails, but it doesn’t seem important. It was early, early spring; there was slush everywhere. I may have seen his body, but I can’t be sure. Hard to tell, among all the gore and blood clots and unidentifiable material, what was him and what was me. And I didn’t look too closely.

Friends told me to have my miscarriage over a strainer, so I could catch his body, see it, and bury it. I didn’t. I remember thinking incredulously, “What would I do with the strainer after that? Keep using it to drain pasta?”  The idea of using an ordinary strainer was unimaginable. Use the strainer, and then clean it carefully (in the kitchen sink?) and throw it out? Bury it?

The logistics of the suggestion completely paralyzed me. Life was clearly never going to be ordinary again. It was too bizarre to imagine this everyday tool playing a part in a storyline that felt like my own death.

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